Frederick Troy is a homicide detective with Scotland Yard.
The period of time of the recorded adventures we have for Troy extend from 1938, just before the start of the hostilities of World War II, to 1963 and middle of the Baby Boomer era. The changes in the world around Troy during those near quarter century will be extensive and to a large degree exhausting but there will be several constants that will be inescapable in his line of work; people will still kill others for a wide variety of reasons and people like he will be needed to track them down and bring them to justice.
Since it is established firmly that Troy is a police officer and not in any way, at any time, a spy, the question arises then why he is included in this compendium. The answer comes from the fact that in those 20+ years he will deal with many, many homicides and the investigations of a fascinating number of those will pull him into the cloak and dagger world. This will greatly complicate his life and his doing his job because while with most homicides, the killer does not want to be caught, in the case of the clandestine world, quite often there will be a host of other interested parties who would prefer a case just go away. Sometimes those so wishing will have a good deal of authority to make it happen.
Troy joined the police force in 1936 at age 21 and after a couple years walking a beat, he was moved to the position of detective, working on "murder cases had led him to define all human relations in terms of conflict". To his mind, his early reach of the rank of Sergeant came from a a "rapid solution to a tricky case, together with the shortage of men in ... the War". To everyone else, he enjoyed whatever rank he has because he has earned it the hard way.
While Troy is British born and raised, he comes from Russian stock, his parents being emigres to England after leaving the Motherland to first spend time in Vienna and then make their way across the Channel. His older brother, Rod, had been born in Vienna. This will lend Troy an interesting pedigree which will help push him into some of the clandestine cases he will find thrown him way; namely his Russian heritage, and understanding of the language and culture, and his parents' time spent in a Germanic-speaking country, and thus a partial grasp of that region.
In the England in which Troy does his crime investigations, the outside threats will largely be felt coming from the hulking Soviet Union or its key satellite, East Germany. Both those nations will have ample reasons over the years to send their operatives to British soil and sometimes a few of them would find reason to kill the odd English citizen or two, or be themselves the victim of homicide. Those deaths would need to be investigated and when it came to picking the right man to head the cases, Troy with his lineage would be a logical choice.
One fascinating aspect of Troy's career will be that his impressive track record of solving difficult cases will make him to many the man to call and to many others the man to not call.